Clarksville is a small rural city of around 10,000 population. Its location along the I-40 Corridor places it in what the DOJ calls “Corridor A,” one of the main distribution arteries used by drug traffickers. This makes Clarksville’s children vulnerable to all the violence associated with drug trafficking.
Clarksville School District Superintendent David Hopkins recently announced that their “Emergency Response Team” (ERT) will go live this August. Since the school board approved ERT in May, volunteer staff has begun preparing.
[Clarksville school secretary Debbie James] says several teachers, custodians and other school employees are learning tactics similar to those used by law enforcement, like defensive techniques, legal use of force and shooting, all with an emphasis on safety and accuracy.
According to Dr. Hopkins, staff will undergo 53 hours of special training. They must also complete a refresher course each summer.
Dr. Hopkins says students will not know which teachers are armed, but parents can be assured the Emergency Response team will be ready in a moment’s notice.
“They’re not gonna be in a uniform, and they’re not gonna be wagging their gun on their side,” explains the superintendent. “We’re going to be very discrete about it, but yet we’re going to be trained professionals, and we’re going to be able to provide security for our kids in a matter of seconds instead of minutes.”
James added: “The ERT will be able to respond to any dangerous situations within seconds, while police officers are still en route to the school.”
Now this is a sensible gun law.